Twisted: Ghosts Of Christmas... Open up this advent calendar of terror, for the 25 spine tingling days of Christmas, each from a terrifying new voice in horror literature.
Written by Maxine Lennon, Lawrence Morgan, Josh and Amy Shevill, Andrew Perry, Kurt Fried, Mark Walker, Ricardo Bravo, Helen Bang, Suzanne Fox, Chris Jeal, Emma Pullar, Toby Norways, Sherice Griffiths, Paul Shearer, Fiona Faith Ross, Jamie Shearing, Rose Banks, Tim Coleman, John Suriano, Claire Rye, Suzie Grogan, Gerry Driver, Aaron Nash, Rachael Howard, Gordon Slack, Steven Butler, Simon Cluett, Evie James, Al Campbell, Michael van Koetsveld, Lee Burgess, Kendall Castor-Perry, Nick Yates, Harriet Barbir, and Rebecca Handley.
All reviews here.
Softback ISBN 9798578860430
By F. F. Ross on 17 December 2020
It's hard to be original with ghost stories these days, but this collection of 40 or so stories by contemporary writers refreshingly blends Christmas cheer with horror undertones. An impressive range of topics set in a holiday theme, varied points of view, and a wide selection of imagined characters and themes soaked in atmosphere, kept me entertained. These are mostly contemporary ghosts, with a couple of classics at the end. Ideal reading for ghost and horror fans, when you have half an hour to spare, to pick up and put down. Fantastic cover, nice presentation and page design and I particularly liked the introductions to each section by the Twisted50 founder. A quality publication.
By M.W. Renshaw on 16 December 2020
I'm a big fan of short stories, especially horror, and this did not disappoint my twisted taste buds. Short and horrifyingly sweet, each Christmas themed tale of terror was a delight to read. My favourites were Power Cut, Isabella and Awake, but I enjoyed them all. Highly recommended.
By The Queen of Darkness on 14 December 2020
Read all reviews HERE.
Was the Night Before Christmas…. well, maybe the month before.
All was right with the world and all we had to do now was to relax and wait for Christmas Day.
‘Screw that,’ screamed Chris Jones from stage left…
Judging by the title of this piece, you would be forgiven if you thought I was referring to this Judge Dredd.
Anyone who has seen the movies (2012 being my preference because I love the concept of a contained dystopian story inside a tower block, and a psycho female drug baron as the antagonist) will know that Dredd is the law, and it’s his way or… die.
How does this relate to judging stories for the Twisted Ghosts of Christmas and Santa’s Bedtime Book of Adventure Stories anthologies? Were the team dreadful to work with because they were all using Slo-Mo in order to cope with reading hundreds of submissions super fast? Were the editor and producer laying down the law like Dredd would?
I have written literally hundreds of short pieces, to a one-day deadline, to a prompt. The prospect of getting a story done in ten days held no horrors for me. At the beginning of lock down
I joined a group of writers who did the daily tasks for 70 days in a row, completing over 13,300 words in the process, each! I didn’t stop there and have continued this every day since 24th March
What’s another short story in the mix? Easy, right?
However, writing horror is not something I’ve tried very often, and the main concern I had was whether I could write something horrific enough to be considered for inclusion in the Twisted anthology. My entry for Twisted 50 Vol 1 was rejected. Could I up my game and make it this time?
Time was never my friend.
Any kind of deadline... it usually didn't end well.
Four, five month deadlines for anthologies and I crashed and burned.
But there would be no dishonour in failing to meet a 10 day deadline. Because that's obviously impossible, anyhow, right? So I opened up TextEdit—because unlike Word that meant I wasn't really serious, clearly, was just jotting down random thoughts—and before I knew it had close on 800 words.
Pasted it into Word and thought: this looks like a story... what did I just do???
Classic Horror fans may recall a moment in Bram Stoker's DRACULA, when Van Helsing lops off vampire Lucy's head, CUTS TO him slicing a bloody joint of roast beef on a tavern table. Directed by Francis Ford Coppola, starring Gary Oldman and Winona Ryder, it's one of the best ever moments in movie horror that explores aspects of flesh – raw or cooked, ripped or shredded, bloody or drained. As sentient flesh ourselves, naturally we're sensitive to these kinds of connections.
Don't Look Now
You'll have your own motives for reading or writing Horror. Universally shared reasons include awareness of our own fragile mortality, and ultimately, fear that we might have to confront the predator. We are hard-wired to weigh the odds of our survival. Also, we're fascinated. We don't want to look, but we can't resist. This is how Stephen King draws us in. Often, he shows us what a character sees before we (through the character's eyes) understand it.
The submissions for the Twisted: Ghosts of Christmas initiative were sooooo good, we decided to include even more authors work!
So drum roll please for the authors we just added to the book…
As ever, debate among the judges was heated, but we finally arrived at a list!
Please do leave a comment on this post, and if you are not on the list, keep going, it’s an insane job to judge art. We may also sneak some bonus stories into the eBook too!
I will be in touch soon about when to buy copies of the book so that we can co-ordinate getting on the Amazon Best Seller list.
OK.. the tension mounts… So drum roll please… The successful writers and stories are…
Last night at midnight, we closed submissions with just shy of 100 short stories being submitted to Twisted: Ghosts
We have a deadline of the 12th December to have the final draft up and online, so things are 24/7 here!
Our team of experienced readers and writers have been reading everything as it comes in so as to get the jump on the deadline, so we hit our publishing date of December 16th.
Every story will be read by four people before the team choose the stories for the book. Elinor Perry-Smith is heading this up, as she also did Twisted 2 and had decades of experience helping writers.
Can you write a short Twisted tale in 1,000 words or less? The fifty best stories will be published in both paperback and online.
We all love a good Christmas ghost story or horror movie. If Hammer House of Horror, Tales of the Unexpected and Pans Books of Horror set your pulse racing and mind spinning as a youngster, then writing a short story, set at Christmas, offers the darkest recesses of your mind, a deliciously macabre feast in which to express itself.
You know you shouldn’t let it out, but you know you want to.
Interested…? Let’s dig a little deeper into this paranormal, wicked and dank shallow grave…
Get involved HERE.